Georgia’s ombudsman has published a new report which lays out the situation in the country’s detention centers, saying the situation remains problematic.

The report was prepared by a team working under the ombudsmann’s office, tasked with carrying out Georgia’s obligations under a United Nations convention to monitor the situation in all detention facilities in order to prevent torture or degrading treatment. The group also inspected conditions for prisoners in pretrial detenion.

Special attention was paid to improper or insufficient medical treatment. Georgia has lately seen a number of prison deaths due to turberculosis. In their report the monitoring group analyzes the reasons for and trends in the deaths among prisoners in the first six months of 2011.

On the basis of its findings, it also makes recommendations within each issues to the Georgian government, the Ministry of Corrections and Legal Assisstance, the Department of Corrections, the Interior Ministry and the Prosecutor General Office. It also includes an appeal to the Georgian parliament.

Ombudsman Giorgi Tugushi presented the report at a press conference Tuesday which was attended by the foreign diplomats, international and local organizations as well as the prison minister Khatuna Kalmakhelidze and her deputies.

Georgia is a signatory to the Optional Protocol to the Convention against Torture and other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment. It went into force in 2006 and establishes an international inspection system for places of detention, called a national prevention mechanism. In Georgia, the ombudsman has been given the responsibility to fulfill the country’s obligations under the convention, and has set up a team of inspectors who regularly visit places of detention and report about the situation.

The report is available (in Georgian) from the ombudsman’s website: